United Kingdom

On behalf of the team

In a four-day trial starting on 19 April 2021, rival claimants the Road Haulage Association (RHA) and UK Trucks Claim (UKTC) argued before the Competition Appeal Tribunal (the CAT) that their applications should be approved, enabling them to proceed to trial.[1] Both claimants are potential class action representatives intending to sue the truck manufacturers that were involved in the truck cartel on behalf of injured parties that bought or leased trucks from the cartelists. The CAT will have to decide whether or not to award a “collective proceedings order” (CPO) to one, both or neither of the claims. A CPO is required under the UK class action regime for either claim to proceed.

The claims differ in that the RHA is looking to use an “opt-in” scheme, while UKTC is primarily looking to bring an “opt-out” claim, with an opt-in scheme put forward only as an alternative. Another difference is that the UKTC claim does not extend to second-hand trucks, while the RHA claim covers all trucks, both new and second-hand.

The truck manufacturers argued that neither RHA or UKTC should be awarded certification because their claims did not satisfy the criteria for approval. As early as October 2019, the cartelists tried to have the planned class actions struck out by challenging the funding arrangement underlying the lawsuits, but without success at first instance.[2] A hearing took place in January 2021 in appeal proceedings brought by DAF to challenge this ruling. The appeal continues.[3]

[1] The case references are: 1282/7/7/18 UK Trucks Claim Limited v. Stellantis N.V. (formerly Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V.) and Others; 1289/7/7/18 Road Haulage Association Limited v. Man SE and Others.

[2] Competition Appeal Tribunal 28 October 2019, [2019] CAT 26, Case No. 1282/7/7/18, 1289/7/7/18.

[3] According to Mlex, ‘DAF tells UK judges truck-cartel mass suits must be struck out over funding arrangements’, 26 January 2021.